Mr. Garrow's Final Principal's Message
This note to you, parents, marks the last Parent Newsletter I will write. I was
able to read the first note I wrote to parents in the summer of 2009. I was
pretty excited to welcome everyone and was marveling at what was to come
and what a fortunate set of circumstances brought me to Central Catholic.
This will be my approximately 100th Parent Newsletter in that ten-year span.
Upon reflection, I have compiled a Top Ten Most Memorable Moments in my
ten years at Central Catholic. In no particular order, they are:
• The growth of our Advanced Placement and Portland Community College
Dual Credit programs. In 2010 we did not have Dual Credit, only AP. In that
year, 133 students took 190 exams. In 2018, we had 90 students receive 9 or
more credits through PCC Dual Credit and 214 students took 437 AP exams.
• Galen Rupp's '04 visit to CC in 2012. Galen humbly and graciously showed
students his newly won silver medal from the 2012 Olympics.
• Watching the Constitution Team go from a demonstration club in 2012 to
a force with third place finishes in state. The academic rigor the students
put into this competition and the hundreds of volunteer hours that go into
supporting them are a joy to watch.
• The athletic success of our teams, including numerous Oregon state
titles. Watching the sustained success of the boys’ cross country and girls’
volleyball teams—along with the first football state championship in 60
years (beating Jesuit helped put this on the list!) and the fall we won all
three boys titles in soccer, cross country, and football.
• The Matt Horne- and Christian Service office-guided, student-led annual
Food Coat Blanket and Penny Drives. These drives have amazingly
amassed over $100,000 in donations to the Downtown Chapel as well as
several thousand pounds of food items and hundreds and thousands of
blankets and coats.
• The sad memories of the passing of faculty and staff members Colette
Taylor, Sr. Maureen Kalsch, and most notably for me, Sr. Jerome Zerr. May
they all rest in peace.
• The music scene at Central Catholic, including all of the spring musicals—
my favorite was Little Shop of Horrors—and Open Mic Nights. Best Open
Mic Night was seeing over 400 supporters fill Revolution Hall on February
10, 2018 for the 20th Anniversary of Open Mic Night.
• Christian Service at Central Catholic. First with Alisa Sinnott and now
Aaron Uchikura, these past ten years provided well over 200,000 hours of
service by our students. My favorite memory is running the soccer clinic
at Nike Youth Games and watching our students positively coach and
interact with Special Olympics athletes.
• Hiring David Blue as Director of Diversity and Inclusion and embarking
on our journey to fulfill the mission of “educating students from diverse
backgrounds in a Catholic community.”
• The opening of the Rams Program and the hiring of its first coordinator,
2010 alum, Mary Wilson. Watching our Peer Mentors interact with students,
the forming of the Rams Social Club, and the growth experienced by the
Central Catholic community from their inclusion has been very gratifying.
Finally, special thanks to you, parents and guardians, for entrusting your
children to Central Catholic and my care these past ten years. Serving as
principal here has been the highlight of my 37-year professional career. I am
especially proud and excited that one of our own will replace me and become
the first female lay principal at Central Catholic. Best of luck to you, Danyelle
Ramsey, as you take over leading this awesome school.
John Garrow '76, Principal
CLICK HERE to read the full June Parent Newsletter.